Costa Rica is known as a progressive country with progressive ideals. For example, the country already abolished the military in 1948, the first environmental protection goals were set in 1997 and more than 98% of the energy is produced from sustainable sources. Legalization of same-sex marriage is now also being added to this list.
Costa Rica recently became the 29th country to legalize same-sex marriages. The bill, which was approved in 2018, officially entered into force on May 26,2020. This means Costa Rica is the first country in Central America to grant marriage as a human right to the LGBTQIA + community.
“Costa Rica officially recognizes equal marriage. Today we celebrate freedom, equality and democratic institutions. Let empathy and love be the compass that allows us to get ahead and build a country where all people fit.” – Carlos Alvarado Quesada, President of the Rpublic of Costa Rica
Example for neighboring countries
The legalization of same-sex marriage is an important point of the election promises made by Carlos Alvarado Quesada, the current president of Costa Rica, and is seen as a valuable step forward for society and the continued welcoming of tourists from the LGBTQIA+ community.
During the Gay Pride in the capital San José last year, the legalization of same-sex marriage was already widely celebrated. Costa Rica serves as an example for neighboring countries in the area of LGBTQIA+ rights. With the legalization of same-sex marriage, the country demonstrates its commitment to full equality of rights and continues to support actions that reduce discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Initiatives for equality and inclusivity
In addition to the legalization of same-sex marriage, there are also various local and national initiatives to support the LGBTQIA+ community. For example, earlier this year a certification program was launched to help tourists and residents find businesses through special stickers. These stickers can be displayed on doors or windows by organizations that stand for equality.
The Rainbow flag – commonly known as the gay pride flag or LGBT pride flag – was devised by Gilbert Baker (1951-2017) during the early years of the gay liberation movement. The first Rainbow flag was raised in San Francisco on June 25, 1978. Find out more about the history of the flag here.